University of Pittsburgh

Advanced Legal Research

Catalog Number: 5491
3.0 Credits
Lecture
Priority: General Enrollment Course
Catalog Requirements: "W" Writing, Professional Skills.

This course will build on the material presented in the Foundations of Legal Research course, and will provide students with a broader array of strategies and skills to approach legal research projects.

The course is to be broadly divided into three components. The first component focuses on strategic approaches to legal research, how to incorporate the research process into the litigation or transactional problem presented and to more effectively integrate the various legal research tools available into that strategic approach. Cost-effective research strategies, including strategies to effectively manage real-world Lexis and Westlaw costs will also be covered. This component will somewhat overlap with, but significantly expand on material from the Foundations course, and will give students a broader understanding of the research process.

The second component of the course recognizes that not all substantive areas of the law utilize the same research resources, strategies and techniques. During this component of the course, students will be exposed to specific topical research areas and spend several weeks looking at the unique resources and research challenges presented by those areas.

The third component of the course returns all students to the same material and focuses on non-legal research areas such as medical and scientific research, business and corporate research, investigative research, and financial and marketplace research. The use of experts in these areas as guest lecturers is anticipated. 

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